As discussed in a recent post, I purchased a Paderno Spiralizer and have been playing around with it a bit in the kitchen. I even shared a recipe for zucchini noodles (a.k.a. zoodles) with sausage and peppers. However, I am no expert and have a lot to learn about this fun and healthy trend. So, when J.S. Amie, author of the Healthy Happy Foodie Blog and 2 cookbooks, approached me and asked if I’d like to have her share a guest post with a spiralizing how-to, I said “Absolutely, yes!” Here is some great information from J.S. to help us all get creative with our spiralizers and eating more veggies.
Have You Heard of Spiralizing?
Spiralizing is a new, revolutionary way of eating low-carb, gluten free and highly nutritious dishes by slicing zucchini and other vegetables and fruits into spiral-shaped strands. A remarkable range of shapes, sizes, and even textures can be produced by varying both blade and technique. Spiralized veggies make an excellent substitute for pasta, noodles, couscous and rice. Often you can simply swap out traditional ingredients for spiralized veggies and end up with a tastier dish!
Benefits of Spiralizing
Spiralizing is fast, easy, delicious and fun! Kids like spiralized food because of the shapes and interesting texture. Guests love spiralized food because it’s a novelty and conversation piece. (Try serving zucchini noodles or cauliflower “rice” at your next dinner party and watch your guests go crazy with excitement!)
Beyond their social benefits, spiralized noodles have many significant health and nutritional benefits:
- low carb
- vegan / vegetarian
- more vitamins than traditional noodles
Tips on How to Spiralize
10 vegetables and fruits which spiralize well:
- Daikon Radish
- Sweet Potatoes / Yams
- Yellow Squash
Vegetables and fruits to avoid:
- Hollow, or contains pits or stones — avocados, bell pepper
- Smaller than 1 ½ inches in diameter — asparagus, green beans, small carrots
- Soft or watery — bananas, kiwi, watermelon
Basic Types of Spiralizers
There are many spiralizers available on the market today. The main two types are:
This inventive, hourglass-shaped slicer is easy to use, easy to clean, and lightweight enough to carry with you when you travel. If you can imagine a pencil sharpener large enough to accommodate a zucchini, then you’ve just imagined the Veggetti Spiral Vegetable Slicer and how it works.
The Paderno Spiralizer is a hand-powered slicer, which means it is neither battery-powered nor electrical. It has more blades and is therefore more versatile than the Veggetti-style spiralizer. About the size of a counter-top mixer, it is safer than other hand-held vegetable spiralizers because the vegetable is inserted into the machine, and directed toward the cutting blades by the action of a turning crank—the cook’s hands never get anywhere near the sharp surfaces.
Types of Cuts/Noodles which Spiralizers Make
With good technique, you and your spiralizer can make:
- Thin spaghetti-sized strands, rings and crescents
- Thick udon or linguini-size strands, rings and crescents
- Wide, flat strands, rings and crescents
Want to try Spiralizing?
Want to try spiralizing? You can start even without a spiralizer. Pick up a free introductory spiralizer QuickStart guide here and make this easy, healthy and delicious carrot pasta with mushrooms.
- 3 large carrots
- ¾ cup chopped mushrooms, any kind
- 2 Tbsp. shallot, chopped (may substitute ¼ yellow onion, chopped)
- 3 tsp. olive oil
- ¾ tsp. dried basil
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- Pinch black pepper
- Pinch salt
- Make “pasta” strands out of the carrots with your Spiralizer or Veggetti. Set aside.
- Add onion (or shallots) and garlic to heated oil in medium-size skillet and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms to the pan and heat for 6-7 minutes or until the mushroom “liquid” has evaporated. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add the carrot “pasta” and mix well. Cook for another 5-10 minutes until the pasta is the texture you prefer.